CHELMSFORD — The Hamilton-Wenham girls basketball team had a small window of time to chip away at its deficit last night.
After Watertown’s Gabby Copolla went to the bench early in the third quarter with her third foul, the Generals did everything thing they could to cut the double-digit deficit. But the top-seeded Raiders had different plans.
Instead, Watertown added to its lead en route to 51-39 victory over Hamilton-Wenham in the Division 2 North semifinals.
“We wanted to go for it then (with Copolla on the bench),” said Hamilton-Wenham head coach Jon DeMarco. “But we just weren’t making our shots in that stretch. If we could’ve just hit a couple more baskets to cut into the lead ...
“I loved our chances in the fourth quarter. We were able to do that against Stoneham when were down (earlier in the state tournament). Credit to Watertown, though, for not letting us make those shots.”
DeMarco figured out early on that he could expose a mismatch in the paint with both Sam Charette and Catherine Ecker dominating down low. The Generals (17-6) tried to get it to Charette and Ecker inside more in the second half to chip away at the deficit.
“They’ve been awesome for us all year, and in the second half we really made it a point to try to find them down low,” DeMarco noted. “Watertown plays a matchup zone, which is a little unorthodox for a high school team, so we had to make some adjustments at halftime. I thought Sam and Catherine really did a nice job getting the ball inside and finishing around the hoop.”
Charette, who was named to the Cape Ann All-League team this winter, poured in a game-high 19 points while Ecker added 10.
The Raiders (21-1) established a 29-15 lead at halftime and there was little that the Generals could do to stop their outside shooters.